Play Live Radio
Next Up:
Available On Air Stations

UnDisciplined: The Aquatic Ecologist And The Biological Engineer

One of the researchers we spoke to this week is trying different ways to make non-spider organisms produce spider silk.

This week on UnDisciplined, we're talking about risk and, as we like to do, we're coming to that idea from two very different directions. One of our guests studies aquatic predators, like sharks, in an effort to better understand their role in the global ecosystem. The other creates transgenic organisms, like goats with spider genes, in an effort to build new knowledge and solve old problems. 

Trisha Atwood is the director of the Aquatic Ecology and Global Change Lab at Utah State Univeristy, where she leads a team dedicated to the study of aquatic ecosystems. She is also the recent recipient of a research fellowship with the National Academies, which she'll be using to explore questions about human effects of the marine carbon cycle. 

Also joining us this week, from Utah State University, is Randy Lewis. You might have seen his biological engineering lab featured in late September on the CBS program "Innovation Nation." At that lab, researchers are working to develop spider silk proteins from organisms other than spiders.